Category - pets

1
A Safe and Simple Way To Get Your Dog To Stop Barking
2
When Your Child’s First Pet Dies
3
How To Keep Pets Safe During The Holidays
4
Host An Easy Puppy Party
5
Surprise Puppy!
6
Really Kevin??
7
Why We Got A Cat When I’m Not A Cat Person
8
When A Pet Dies
9
Pets Are Family
10
Turns Out I Could Have Been A GP GP

A Safe and Simple Way To Get Your Dog To Stop Barking

Caring for, playing with, and loving a pet has innumerable therapeutic, developmental, and soul nurturing benefits. Our daughter has intellectual and physical challenges and she requires a variety therapies. Her favourite form of therapy and the one with zero negative side effects is pet therapy.  When I said ZERO negative side effects I may have glossed over one annoyance. Surprisingly it’s not the ridiculous amount of time it took to house train Avery’s new puppy. Did you know Yorkshire Terriers take great pleasure in peeing on every carpet in the house? It took well over a year, but she’s finally pee trained. Mostly. (We still don’t have any area rugs down on the floors though just in case…) Barking is the major hesitation I had when my daughter begged for a “wittle” dog. Little dogs have a reputation for yapping—a jarring, ear-piercing bark that makes me jump out of my skin. I love this little dog, but when she starts barking I forget how cute she is. I finally relented however because a tiny dog for my mini Dr. Doolittle daughter to love and look after was the right thing.  But the barking… 😤 A friend told me about a bark collar they got[…]

Read More

When Your Child’s First Pet Dies

There are many life changing things about including a pet in your family. When you have a child with disabilities, pets can make a marked difference to their quality of life. Pets are more work in a “get off the couch and walk these ding dongs and change that litter and fill that food bowl…” sort of way, but I can’t imagine life without an animal by my side or under the covers. (Even though they should be in their crate. I know, I know…) The only true downside to pets, aside from mild annoyances like the occasional whining to go out for a pee at 5am, or fur on your favourite black yoga pants, is the ultimate downside which is of course the death of your best fur friend.  That’s the part that almost makes me never want to love an animal again. We become attached and they become family. Watching them go is hard. If you’re a pet person, you understand this completely.  Some losses are harder than others. When our guinea pig Ernie died from a seizure we were sad, but we’d had him less than a year and our connection wasn’t as deep as it was with other[…]

Read More

How To Keep Pets Safe During The Holidays

I have a lingering childhood memory of my friend’s cat—specifically of the sparkly tinsel hanging from his butt one Christmas. When I tried to pull it out my friend’s older brother shrieked, “Stop! You’ll pull his intestines out!!” I was horrified.  Later that winter when I was tugging on a ribbon in search of a coin in the money cake my mom made for my birthday, all I could think of was yanking out a string of cake covered cat intestines.  Nobody cherishes memories based on separating Fluffy from his innards, so here are some tips for keeping your furry family members safe and alive over the holidays. FOOD Candy can cause gastrointestinal problems like vomiting and diarrhea, while chocolate and xylitol (found in sugar-free candy and gum) are potentially deadly. Rich holiday foods can cause stomach upset or even pancreatitis. A little bit of lean meat is fine, but offer sparingly (and not directly from the table. Ya, I’m looking at you Grandpa!). Foods with raw eggs and undercooked poultry may contain salmonella bacteria. Onions and garlic can be toxic to pets. Plus, my dog’s breath is already bad enough. Bones from your holiday meal can cause obstructions and perforate the[…]

Read More

Host An Easy Puppy Party

We hosted a puppy birthday party today and it was off the chain. Literally. There were dogs running free all over the yard and in my kitchen. When I was a regular contributer for a popular website called The Yummy Mummy Club (now, “YMC”) I went by the handle “Party Mummy.” My beat was all things entertainment. I wrote about pet parties (why yes, we did throw a full-on dog wedding), kids’ parties, adult parties—some reeeeeally adult ones like a passion party, an unforgettable (for my husband at least) vasectomy dinner, various mom pub crawls—plus a vast array of “let your hair down for some serious fun” parties.  At one point I was attending or hosting some kind of festivity at least once a week. Lately however, I’ve been about as social as an incarcerated nun librarian mime in solitary confinement. It’s a temporary lull. Life just got busy and a little too serious. However, when your daughter’s dog turns one year old you simply MUST throw a puppy party no matter what else you have going on. Even if the date falls on Thanksgiving weekend.  So today we somewhat hurriedly but happily hosted Ruby’s “ONE Year Birthday Party.” Puppy pants, optional.[…]

Read More

Surprise Puppy!

Before you say it, I know. And I fully agree. Puppies are not usually an appropriate Christmas gift. But, when you’re already planning on adding a pet to the family, being able to coordinate it with Santa is a parenting coup.  Our daughter Avery adores animals. She lives and breathes fur. I also breathe fur, hence my weekly allergy shots. But that’s a story for another time.  Avery’s first pet was our rescue dog, a terrier/chihuahua Roger. We got him when Avery was a toddler and her physical therapist suggested a dog as motivation to get her walking. It worked.  We also had a guinea pig. Sadly, he’s in pet heaven now. RIP Ernie.  And if you are familiar with my Instagram account, you’re painfully aware that we have a big orange tabby named Kevin. He just so darn photogenic that I can’t help but share pics and videos of him. A lot. Like, a “crazy cat lady” amount.  Now that Avery is eleven and is responsible enough to start caring for a puppy—learning to feed and train her very own dog, we were happy to make this wish come true.  Though she asked Santa for a puppy (she actually[…]

Read More

Really Kevin??

I’ve never had a cat, so I’m reaching out to any cat people out there for some clarification. Is it normal for a cat to stand boldly on a stove-top…repeatedly, even after sauteing his paws several times?! You know how toddlers think if they can’t see you, you can’t see them? I can totally see you Kevin. Though he has a beautiful plush bed equip with a dangly toy and cushy pillow, he prefers to stuff himself into baskets. Normal, right? Orange fuzzy kitten scarf!!! One size fits all! Order yours on Etsy. Do all cats have such a lax work ethic? On his application he said he’s interested in computers. Liar, liar, paws on fire. He doesn’t know a CPU from a CPmew. He’s only interested in playing with the mouse! Ask him to take a message and he writes, “Dec. 4th: catnipcatnipcatnipcatnipcatnipcatnipcatnip” Cheeky cat. Lazy or just really, really, really relaxed?? I was told to keep a cat off the counter, spray him with water. We tried it. He seemed to enjoy the light misting. Then I tried splashing him with water from this yellow bowl. Here’s Kevin ON THE COUNTER drinking from the “scary” yellow bowl. Know[…]

Read More

Why We Got A Cat When I’m Not A Cat Person

^What people said when I told them we were getting a cat ^ A) We have reasons. B) Correct, I’m a dog person. Cats are pretty weird. C) You can never have too many pets, can you? Wait. Cat horders. I suppose you can. D) I am a little allergic—hives, scratchy throat, red eyes swollen eyes, sneezy allergic. So WHY get a cat??!! Because. Her.   Our girl likes loves animals. Dogs, cats, anything with fur. Or without fur even. RIP Ernie. We miss you tremendously.     When she grows up I imagine she’ll choose a vocation involving animals. Perhaps she’ll work as a vet tech? Or at a vet clinic or animal shelter in some capacity—greeting clients, feeding and grooming the animals. How perfect would that be? When she’s a bit older, I plan to help her set up and run a pet sitting or dog walking business. The way I see it, Avery’s passion is clear. So if we can do anything to help her gain the experience to guide her along that path, shouldn’t we?     So this leads us to our cat… KEVIN. My friend was telling us about her cousin’s cat, the original Kevin.[…]

Read More

When A Pet Dies

Pets die. It’s inevitable, but when it actually happens, it’s heart wrenching. Especially when you have kids.   We have two dogs who are getting on in years and we accept that they won’t be with us forever. But our skinny pig Ernie was only ten months old, so when he died suddenly it was a shock. Though he was merely a guinea pig to some, to us he was a beloved pet and sweet friend to my kids Sebastian and Avery. For reasons unknown, Ernie had a massive seizure and died. My daughter has Epilepsy so I’ve done my fair share of research into seizures. But never did I imagine I’d be Googling “what to do when your guinea pig has a seizure.” I was sitting next to his cage when it happened. He suddenly began convulsing in his cage, and was paralyzed and helpless in a matter of minutes. I knew when I picked held him, his head tilted and nuzzled lifelessly into my neck, that he was leaving us. That’s the hardest part about having a pet—they are completely dependent on us for their survival. So when they get sick or hurt or god forbid die, it’s[…]

Read More

Pets Are Family

  People say we’re nuts for having so many pets. Three isn’t “so many” if you ask me, but I’m not one to split hairs—even the ones stuck to my black pants. Is life easier without a small herd of animals to take care of? Sure. Is it as rewarding? Not for us. When our daughter was about two and a half and still not walking, one of her physical therapists suggested we find something highly motivating to her to get Avery up off the floor and walking. Avery has always been obsessed with dogs. THIS would be her motivation. My sister-in-law has her own veterinary practice and she found the perfect dog for us—a mutt, part chihuahua, part terrier and part teeny-tiny wolf. He was about three years old, housebroken, quiet, not too big, and a RESCUE DOG in need of a loving home. We would be that home.   Within three months of adopting Roger, our girl was walking; then running after her canine companion. A few years later we adopted a second dog, Maya. We even hosted a dog wedding. No seriously, you can witness the Bow Wow Vows here. It can take people a lifetime to[…]

Read More

Turns Out I Could Have Been A GP GP

  As a child I dreamed of growing up to be a vet (as in veterinarian—I had no interest in being a war veteran. I make love, not war. Plus I look terrible in khaki). Due to my fear of blood and even bigger fear of math and science, this dream didn’t come true. I became a teacher instead and ended up working with animals nonetheless… small human ones. Little did I know I would have to deal with bloody noses and knees and TEACH math and science. My love of animals has been passed down to my children. My daughter is a mini Doctor Doolittle who quite literally talks to the animals. We have enough mammals living under our roof that she’s never hard pressed to find a conversation partner. And my son who has until now stated that he wants to be a zoo keeper, has switched to the occupation of veterinarian. “I don’t like the idea of zoos anymore,” he told us (thank you Blackfish). “I would rather be a vet like Auntie Tanya.” This boy has so much love in his heart, he has plenty to share with all of dog’s creatures (I know. I can’t[…]

Read More

All images and text are copyright © 2019 Forever In Mom Genes